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Reader Comments (51)

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:08PM (Unverified) said

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Hurah! MORE F2P inc.

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:16PM Tizmah said

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I have a bad feeling with all this F2P stuff. But I guess it's just me.

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 6:02PM (Unverified) said

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@Tizmah

I don't think your wrong, NA players don't believe in something for nothing. F2P breeds poor quality, pay to win microtransactions, and companies going under because they can't pay their bills with the big money pit they made. We want high standards, better quality of gaming, and to be a amazed, not this F2P gimic nonsense.
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 9:48PM Tizmah said

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@Tempes Magus I hope you're right Tempes. I really do. All you said may be true, but F2P certainly opens up a lot more loop holes that companies can take advantage of us with...
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:22PM aaradun said

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F2P is not the direction of gaming, not because his poor little product couldn't sustain a population without making it free that it's the future of gaming.

The future of gaming is the hybrid pay to play model. Not F2p because really at the end of the day those games are not free to play if plan to really invest in them past the newbie stage of the game.

But i'm not against that model, it lets the customer at least pick and choose what they pay for. And nothing in the cash shop is a requirement to actually win the game. Sure you may have things to help level faster and so on, but nothing that will actually make you stronger then anyone else.

And that's what what a f2p game is to me, a low quality game that players can actually win if they but the super duper new item of the month that makes you stronger. Those are really bad for the customer.

I'm okay with the hybrid model as at least i can still enjoy the game without feeling inferior to everyone else because i didn't choose to buy the OMG I"M LEET package of the day.

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:37PM Spiritbeast said

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@aaradun I agree with you way too much. Games that have the option to pay monthly I'm fine with - those without are trouble. I'd much rather spend $15 a month to be on a level playing field with all the other paying members, then have to spend WAY MORE to be valid. Games in which your characters strength is directly proportional to your money spent? No good.
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 7:50PM Ragemaster9999 said

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@Spiritbeast

right because people never buy power leveling services and gold from grey market sites in pay to play mmos.... /sarcasm
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 11:10PM ShivanSwordsman said

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@aaradun

Personally, I'd rather not pay a monthly hostage fee for my characters when most games and shooters had free online before certain games came out milking their users for $15 a month. Now everyone's jumping on the bandwagon, demanding money, trying to say it's "going to updates" when you still have to pay for the frelling expansion packs.

F2P nixes this, but most have a pay-to-win cash shop. Besides, now P2P games are going cash shop too. Warhammer Online has a PAY TO WIN cash shop, and it's pay monthly. You can't equate quality with these products. I can pay $60 for a shooter on the PC, and half of them no longer have Dedicated Servers or Mod Tools/Map Tools. Meanwhile, Team Fortress 2 went Pay To Play, and the cash shop actually gives money to the FRELLING AUTHORS, IN THE COMMUNITY.

MMO side, Guild Wars. I paid a flat box fee, it gets updated constantly with bug fixes. Monthly for WoW, and I still have to pay for the expansion packs, and them charging premium services, and having a cash shop with sparkly griffins. So yes, you can have your monthly subs. with Buy To Play (Guild Wars 2) and Free To Play beginning to pick up steam, things are finally getting back together.

It's up to you, the players, to make the good, fair companies winners, and to not support the trashy, horrible games. The sad fact is, though, gamers apparently like being abused, otherwise games like Warhammer Online and Call of Duty would be dead.
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:31PM Valentina said

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Yep, what Aaradun said. The future is the hybrid/freemium model. It gives the option for players to subscribe for everything flat out, or to play for free and pick/choose what you want out of the games. I am surprised the newer games coming out aren't launching with the hybrid model

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 4:02PM real65rcncom said

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@Valentina

SWTOR doesn't need that model.

GW2 doesn't charge monthly.

Games like Tera and ArcheAge are probably backed by the governments of Korea/China with loans/grants and such so they don't worry.

The other games have to pay back as much of the initial investor/upfront costs as possible so that's why they go P2P out of the box.

After a few months they do like RIFT and have firesales at 4.99 and then other games who look longterm realize they can't keep charging for P2P.

That's when they switch, after they've made as much upfront money as possible.
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Posted: Jul 5th 2011 4:36AM Snichy said

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@Tempes Magus. I agree with your statement that no game needs a subscription. But you seem to expect every MMO that is released to be free to download, with every bit of content free and every expansion or new content to be free. This is naive - exactly how do you expect companies to pay staff and overheads?! A company does not make games for the good of mankind, they do it to make money. Companies have been very successful in charging for the client and a subscription then switching to a form of F2P when numbers fall, and that is how it will remain for some time yet in my opinion, and I have no problem with it. I don't play GW, but In an ideal world paying for the game but not a subscription like GW would be better for players but quite rightly companies will release to whatever makes them the most money - the quality of the game is completely separate and (I think) nothing to do with the business model. If a game is poorly coded, implemented and tested it is irrelevant if it is free or subscription.
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:36PM Taawa said

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Yes, Valentina and aaradun are right. And Freemium is a good thing for gamers. It lets people try a game without investing heavily. It allows people to back burner games when they are too busy, but still allows one to jump back in for short bouts of play. It also gives developers incentive to produce new content people want to pay for.

Heck, if Bioware made WAR Freemium, and added a new RvR zone with unique rewards and a new capture mechanic for WAR, I'd pay twenty or even thirty dollars for it.

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:36PM Ordegar said

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I'm glad to see yet another successful alternate payment system story. We really need to get out of the mindset of calling the game by its payment back-end though. It's not a free to play game, it's a game. The game hasn't changed; the method by which the developer draws payment from those who play the game has changed.

As exhibited by "...Harris also admits to a bit of F2P bias in a previous life.", attaching the payment method to the game, as if it's part of the game's genre, is inaccurate and misleading.

There are no free-to-play games. There are games. There are games which are paid for by paying an initial purchase (Guild Wars); there are games which are paid for by an initial purchase and continued subscription (Everquest II, World of Warcraft, et al); and there are games which are paid for a la carte with in-game shopping.

As demonstrated by Turbine and others, including Hi-Rez now, the game and the payment method are not one and the same, and the payment method can be changed without changing gameplay at all.

My point of all of this is that F2P does not define the game, so we need to not call the games such. Only by separating the concepts of the game and the payment method will people stop judging games based on how they are paid for.

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 3:52PM Dril said

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It isn't the future.

Free-to-play is the domain of games that are poor quality to start with (i.e. the f2ps of 3 years ago), games that failed and need some way to attract people based on finances rather than good game design (APB, Hellgate) and games that just wanted a cash boost without developing anything major (EQ2X, LOTRO.)

Ben from TooDamnEpic summed it up best: "The cold, hard fact is this: If an MMO is good, people will pay for it."

(Before someone chirps in with LoL: it's not an MMO. It's a fantastic example of a workable f2p yes, and it works for games like LoL and TF2 that are lobby-based, but they're not MMOs.)

Posted: Jul 4th 2011 5:48PM Lenn said

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@Dril "The cold, hard fact is this: If an MMO is good, people will pay for it."

People who only have so much money.
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 6:06PM Dril said

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@Lenn

$15 a month is not, by the vast majority of Western definitions, a sizeable sum.

If you can afford a PC, internet, a monitor and peripherals an MMO sub is a pittance.

Especially if they were otherwise going to spend it on film tickets.
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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 6:34PM Lenn said

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@Dril You're missing the point. If everyone and their grandmas are playing WoW, how will other games every break through? People can pay for one MMO, yes. Maybe two. But anything after that becomes a little silly, especially given the fact that when you pay for an MMO you feel obligated to play to get your money's worth.
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Posted: Jul 5th 2011 2:38AM Amusednow said

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@Dril TF2 isn't lobby based unless in some strange world you consider a server browser a lobby. Lobby to me means being forced to wait for a queue to be dumped into a horrible server without regard for decent latency and player size. ie GA.
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Posted: Jul 5th 2011 10:53AM mrantimatter said

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@Dril $15 is a ton of money when you aren't putting a ton of time into the game.

If you just want to be able to log in every so often, and play for a bit, then the subscription model actually lacks worth.

subscriptions tend to breed a need to play to justify the recurring costs. F2P, on the other hand, doesn't. You get much more a feeling of 'play when i want to' with that model.

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Posted: Jul 4th 2011 4:04PM real65rcncom said

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@ Taawa

There's a dirty little rumor going around that WAR is going FTP very, very soon.

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